British Prime Minister Theresa May announces resignation as UK Conservative Party leader

National
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Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May gives a speech to a packed parliament Tuesday March 12, 2019. May keeps going, declining to resign, despite two successive parliamentary defeats of historic proportion and she is still pushing for her Brexit agreement, despite ample evidence that Parliament won’t support it. (Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament via AP)

British Prime Minister Theresa May says she will step down as U.K. Conservative Party leader in two weeks, sparking a contest to become Britain’s next prime minister.

May announced her resignation Friday morning.

May says she will stay as caretaker prime minister until the new leader is chosen, a process likely to take several weeks.

May has bowed to relentless pressure from her party to quit over her failure to take Britain out of the European Union on schedule.

Her departure will trigger a party leadership contest in which any Conservative lawmaker can run. The early front-runner is Boris Johnson, a former foreign secretary and strong champion of Brexit.

Britain is currently due to leave the EU on Oct. 31, but Parliament has yet to approve divorce terms.

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